1. When the children of today grow up, what do you think they’ll say about this period in time? What do you most hope they remember?
That we tried. That we tried hard to make a difference. Tried hard to change the world for the better. Tried to leave the world a place that they would be proud of. Tried to fix the mistakes of our parents without making too many of our own.
2. National Teacher’s Day is celebrated in the US of A on the first Tuesday in May, this year May 7th…share how a particular teacher positively impacted you.
Oh so many. Ms. McCreary in elementary school, who was an awesome first grade teacher then moved to third grade so she could have our advanced language arts class again. Ms. Mann, who was my fourth grade math teacher. Ms. Frasier, sixth grade English. Ms. Ragsdale, tenth grade Algebra II and senior year calculus. Pat Robertson, the nations foremost scholar on Civil War history. But most of all my friends. I have so many friends that are teachers, and I’m so proud to know each and every one of them.
3. What’s a dish your mama made, that if set in front of you today would whisk you right back to childhood?
Rice. My brother and I were talking about this just the other day. No one else we know has ever eaten it the way we did for breakfast growing up. It was a special treat–to be had at Christmas or if we were sick. We didn’t ask for pancakes or eggs, we asked for rice. Hot, with milk, butter, and sugar. Almost like a cereal, but warm. Oh so good. Still a comfort food to this day.
4. Mother May I was a game we played when I was growing up…no pieces, parts, or plugs required. What games from childhood do you remember loving that were also pieces, parts, and plug-free?
Across the street there was nothing but woods behind the houses. We would tromp through the woods for hours. Up to the railroad tracks, to the campground a few miles away, making forts and gymnastics equipment out of the trees that had fallen. And playing categories. Awesome days.
5. Besides your own mother, tell us about a woman who influenced you as a child?
When I was a teenager, we had Acteens in my church. I started in grade 7 and went through until I graduated from high school. I met so many women through that who were icons in the missions world. Mary Saunders, who brought the plight of starving children in Ethiopia to the world. Kitty Walker, whose son was serving in Taiwan. Julie, who was the first person I knew that was married but kept her maiden name. Such a cool lady.
6. Mamma Mia! What’s the best play or musical you’ve ever seen?
Ohmygoshtherearesomany. Cats was great for being the first one I ever saw on Broadway. Lion King was absolutely stunning and so ground breaking visually. A Chorus Line was the first one I got to see on my own by choice. Les Miserables was the first I became obsessed with. Will Rogers Follies was the first one I got to work on backstage (and onstage too, for that matter!). Rent was one of the first ones that I felt spoke to my generation. 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee was just pure fun. Avenue Q was the first R rated show–with puppets even. Book of Mormon was R rated as well, but the first seen on Broadway since I was 13. Musicals speak to me, in various ways. I’ve seen plenty that weren’t spectacular or weren’t moving, but the music was fantastic. Jeckyll & Hyde before Lisa became Emma. Side Show (Virginia girl made good!). Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. Miss Saigon. Wicked. Billy Elliott. The Secret Garden. Seen some that were just clunkers, in my opinion–The Wedding Singer. The Scarlet Pimpernel. Once on this Island. South Pacific. Paint Your Wagon. Because I live in an area that doesn’t get A-market shows often, and when they do they run to death (Wicked is coming for the third time in four years, making the total running in town eight weeks. While I’m thrilled that Riverdance isn’t coming for the thirtieth consecutive year, it would be nice to see something new!), I don’t get the opportunity to see many, if any, plays. But two years ago, some friends and I took a day trip to NYC. Saw the evening performance of Book of Mormon (where I alternated between laughing hysterically and thinking ‘I’m going to go straight to hell for finding this funny’) we also saw a matinée performance of The Normal Heart. It had only been running for a week. And a cast that wouldn’t quit. (Ellen Barkin, the sole female, won the Tony for best featured actress that year, as well as a host of other awards for the show.) There were four of us that went, and at the end, three of us needed to go shopping for tissues and a new shirt because we had cried so much during the show. So powerful. So moving. And while not necessarily the best thing I’ve ever seen on the stage, it’s probably the most meaningful, most heartbreaking, most thought provoking thing I’ve seen ever.
7. What are three smells that make you feel nostalgic?
A new jar of Play-Doh, because it instantly takes you back to age seven. Jergens hand lotion, because that cherry scent reminds me of the instant that Nana finished washing the evening dishes and then coated her hands with the stuff to avoid dishpan hands. A combo of freshly shaved wood, motor oil, and aftershave–the smell of my Papa as he worked in the shop after a day of work.
8. Insert your own random thought here.
I’ve been lax in my linky parties lately. I had some life to take care of for a bit, and then just didn’t get back in the habit. I apologize for being absent, as I do enjoy them. I’m off to bed this evening, and if last night is any indication, I will be possessing about six inches of my king size bed as the dog, who at the age of 2 has learned to jump up to spend the night (seriously, he was so proud of himself. He used to be terrified of the bed, now he looks at me every night as if to say ‘can we go to bed yet?’. Too bad he can’t figure out how to get DOWN in the morning yet.), and became the biggest bed hog I’ve ever seen. Night night y’all!